May 6, 2024

Partnership Leader Urges Continued Grassroots Advocacy

To be effective in grassroots advocacy, home health voices must be loud. It is up to us to make sure lawmakers know the home health community will not stand for another round of Medicare cuts.

In a new LinkedIn article, Partnership CEO Joanne Cunningham explains the importance of grassroots advocacy. Read her article below and then visit our advocacy center to email your lawmakers in support of the Preserving Access to Home Health Act. Your participation goes a long way in making the home health community’s voice heard!

Home health advocates from across the country were recently in Washington, DC advocating to protect patient access to home health and the stability of the Medicare home health program. These advocates shared their stories directly with policymakers, but for those who can’t travel to the nation’s capital, there is still so much you can do for your patients and your profession. In fact, you can participate in grassroots advocacy right from home.

Grassroots advocacy – at its most fundamental level – is constituents communicating with their elected officials to drive meaningful change. Whether in person or through the phone or a computer, grassroots advocacy is about local residents speaking out about the issues that matter most to them. For the home health community, one of the urgent issue that matters most is Medicare’s continued cuts to the home health program.

Cuts that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has already made will slash more than $19 billion from Medicare home health payments through 2029 (the first 10 years of PDGM).

These cuts to date do not include an additional $3.5 billion (at least) in “temporary adjustments” or “clawback” cuts that CMS plans to recoup from providers. To stop these cuts, Congress must intervene.

The Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare is asking you to contact your lawmakers in Congress today and repeatedly this year to ask them to stop home health cuts. Bipartisan legislation – Preserving Access to Home Health Act (S. 2137/H.R. 5159) – stops additional cuts CMS has proposed for home health in future years. It’s that simple – it stops the cuts.

When it comes to grassroots advocacy, I urge people to keep these three key messages in mind.

  • It’s about our patients: Nearly 100% of people surveyed in America say they want to age in their homes. But without stability in the Medicare program, patient access to care in the home will suffer. For Medicare patients to recover and heal safely at home, these cuts must be stopped.
  • It’s about the workforce: For home health providers, the costs of employing staff to deliver care in the home to patients comprise most of their costs. To meet the needs of Medicare beneficiaries needing care in the home means that home health agencies must recruit and retain nurses, social workers, physical, occupational and speech therapists, home health aides, and other skilled professionals. When Medicare cuts home health, providers cannot recruit and retain the staff they need to meet the demand for care in the home.
  • It’s about saving taxpayer’s money: Home healthcare saves the Medicare Trust Fund and the federal government by providing high quality, clinically advanced, low-cost care in the home. Medicare’s own data show the home health value-based care model (HHVBP) produced $1.38 billion in cumulative Medicare savings over six years in just nine states. This same model, when expanded nationwide is projected (by CMS) to save an additional $3.4 billion over 4 years.

To be effective, home health voices must be loud.

We all must share our stories with our elected officials and encourage our patients and colleagues to do the same. If lawmakers aren’t hearing routinely from the home health community, they are not likely to respond to our requests for help.

It is an election year, so lawmakers are listening extra hard. It is up to us to make sure they know the home health community will not stand for another round of Medicare cuts. We simply can’t.

If you’ve participated in grassroots advocacy before, I thank you. And I ask that you do it again. And again. And again. If you haven’t advocated before, please get involved. There is no such thing as too much.

Please visit the Partnership for Quality Home Healthcare‘s website at to contact your lawmakers today. You don’t have to be a Partnership member to use our grassroots platform. It is open to anyone who wants to advocate for home health.

Help us stop home health cuts. Your voice matters.